Monday, August 24, 2009

Economists question Olympic economic benefits

An economic professor questions Mayor Richard M. Daley's assertion that the 2016 Olympics would boost Chicago's economy by $22.5 billion. Several economists think this boost is highly unlikely.

Victor Matheson, a professor of economics at College of the Holy Cross in Massachusetts, who studies the impact of the Olympics on host cities called the mayor's claims "crazy."According to the article in today's Chicago Business, that figure far exceeds the benefits of other host cities.  A big part of the $22.5 billion figure is based on a boost in tourism during and five years after the Olympics.

The organizers of the Olympics in Sydney, predicted a $2.5 billion boost in tourism five years after the games, but that "never materialized."

What do you think? Will the Olympics be a boom or bust for the city?

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